The Corner

A Few Lines on Baltimore

There are reams to be written about Baltimore. I’d like to write just a few lines.

The young rioters have had their butts kissed for a long time. They’ve been told they are victims — victims of a society rigged against them. A racist society. They’ve been told they aren’t free in life, but shackled.

They’ve been brought up to regard themselves as entitled and victimized, at the same time.

In truth, they are among the luckiest people in the whole world: to have been born American. Millions, probably billions, would be happy to trade places with them. The rioters are free to make of life what they will. Their shackles are mental and spiritual.

“You’ve got to be carefully taught,” goes a song. These young people have been grossly mistaught — misled — by the “grievance industry” (to use shorthand).

Just about the worst thing you can do to a child is tell him he’s a victim — when it’s not true. Even when it is true, it may be unwise. It is surely damnable when it’s not true.

At the first sign of lawbreaking — particularly of the violent sort — society must say No. Not one brick, not one store window. There is no excuse. To excuse lawbreaking is not compassionate, it is cruel (to all concerned).

Where I’m from, the worst thing you could be was a Republican or conservative. I mean, it was terribly uncool. But life forced me into it — into conservative Republicanism. I saw that contemporary liberalism was sick at its core. I see it in Baltimore, and the responses to it, now.

The above lines are generalizations — subject to many caveats, exceptions, and elaborations — but I sense they are true.

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